Pronunciation of 'aizoon'

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Jeremy
Title: Guest
Joined: 2009-10-01
Pronunciation of 'aizoon'

In general I feel that most of 'our' words are artificial constructs, most being bastardizations of Greek and Latin, or Latin endings tacked on to proper nouns, and as such pronunciation is arbitrary as long as everyone knows what's being talked about. I just wondered about this one. It's such a strange word, and not in any dictionary I can find, although defined as 'evergreen' in an online list of botanical epithets. If it's Greek, I wonder if the second part would be two syllables, "oh-on". "Zoon" seems unlikely. Whether the beginning is "ay" or "eye" might be a matter of taste.

Jeremy
Title: Guest
Joined: 2009-10-01

I don't know what happened, my message suddenly posted in the middle of my typing. I continue. I searching on the web I came across a company by this name who spelled it AizoOn, implying (to me) that they intend the second "O" to be pronounced. I suspect that most people would pronounce it "ay-zoon".I would tend toward "eye-zoh-on".Opinions? Knowledge?

Jeremy Uxbridge, MA US Zone 6a Consider that you might be wrong.

Hoy
Hoy's picture
Title: Member
Joined: 2009-12-15

According to a Norwegian flora I have the word "AIZOON" is from Greek "aei" = ever and "zoon" =  living. Used by Plinius, dead 79AD. The English pronunciation you better tell me! In Norwegian it is easy.

Trond Rogaland, Norway - with cool, often rainy summers  (29C max) and mild, often rainy winters (180 cm/year)!

Mark McD
Title: Moderator
Joined: 2009-12-14

Hi Jeremy, I see we are fellow Massachusettsians (is there an agreed upon name for people living in Massachusetts?), you're about about 40 miles due south of my location, and hence you pick up one notch on the USDA Zone map.

I'm not sure you're aware that you can edit a message even after it has posted.  There are two buttons that allow editing your own messages. The small Edit button to the lower right of your message will re-enter basic text edit mode, useful for adding text, fixing spelling corrections, etc.  Then there is a Modify button in the upper right side of your message, this will re-enter the full text editing mode with access to all of the formatting buttons, emoticons, and photo uploads.

Back to aizoon, never really thought about it much, but I agree with your conclusions, that most people pronounce it as "ay-zoon" but it is probably more correct to say "eye-zoh-on". While the latter might be more correct, you might get some blank stares :D

Then there are regional pronounciation peculiarities.  For example, how would one pronounce Arborvitae in Massachusetts,  I would say "ar-bor-vie-tee" whereas my family and most MA people say ahh-bah-vie-tee, here in the land of lost rrr's.

Mark McDonough Massachusetts, USA, near the New Hampshire border USDA Zone 5 antennaria at aol.com  

Jeremy
Title: Guest
Joined: 2009-10-01

Hey, Mahk,Well, I had to reply if only to see those options. I don't know if I inadvertently hit a key or if I timed out, but that message posted while I was still writing. It was pure chance that it was at the end of a sentence. Thanks for the advice.And we're acquainted, if not by name. I'm the very large bald person at New England Chapter meetings. According to the revised Arbor Day Zone map I'm solidly a zone 6 now. It was borderline before.Being originally from New Jersey, I pronounce my rrrrs.

Buy hey, Hoy, how do you pronounce it in Norway?

Oh, now I see that those options are always there for your own messages!

Jeremy Uxbridge, MA US Zone 6a Consider that you might be wrong.

Jeremy
Title: Guest
Joined: 2009-10-01

I've found that the "zoon" in Greek is spelled zeta omega omicron nu. I don't know Greek, but The Source (Wikipedia) tells me that Omega means 'big O' and omicron means 'small O', so perhaps that argues for an "oh-on" pronunciation.

Jeremy Uxbridge, MA US Zone 6a Consider that you might be wrong.

Hoy
Hoy's picture
Title: Member
Joined: 2009-12-15
Jeremy wrote:

Being originally from New Jersey, I pronounce my rrrrs.

Buy hey, Hoy, how do you pronounce it in Norway?

Hello Jeremy, in Norwegian 'ai' will be  pronounced  about in the same way you say the pronoun I, 'z' = s and 'oon' = ôn. The ô is a long vowel you don't have in English I think. Usually we don't use the ^ either, but the letter o have different ways to be pronounced. But I think the Greek omega = Norwegian Å (this one you probably can't see properly, it is also AA) and omikron =  Norwegian O. Then 'zoon' should be 'såon' (saaon) we say however 'sôn'.Being from Oslo, Norway, I pronounce my R with the tip of my tongue very different from standard English.

Trond Rogaland, Norway - with cool, often rainy summers  (29C max) and mild, often rainy winters (180 cm/year)!

Jeremy
Title: Guest
Joined: 2009-10-01
Hoy wrote:

Being from Oslo, Norway, I pronounce my R with the tip of my tongue very different from standard English.

Hello, Hoy

Now is that standard English English or American English? Just kidding! And Oslo. In America we would say ah-zloe, but I recently watched a Norwegian movie and it sounded like they pronounced it more like oosh-looh. But we're getting away from matters horticultural. A German friend recently visited and showed many slides from a trip to Svalbard (sp?).  She said there were many large tourist boats, but she was on a smaller boat for people interested in nature and science. She had taken some photos of flowers just for me, including one of Campanula uniflora, I think the most northerly Camp. And lots of Polar bears! Beautiful scenery!  

Jeremy Uxbridge, MA US Zone 6a Consider that you might be wrong.

Mark McD
Title: Moderator
Joined: 2009-12-14
Jeremy wrote:

Hey, Mahk,

And we're acquainted, if not by name. I'm the very large bald person at New England Chapter meetings. According to the revised Arbor Day Zone map I'm solidly a zone 6 now. It was borderline before.Being originally from New Jersey, I pronounce my rrrrs.

Hey Jeremy, you pronounced my name right ;D  I grew up in Lexington, MA, all of my family are "r"-challenged, but for some reason, I actually pronounce my rrrs, always have.  I made sure my two daughters learned the difference, as the entire faculty in our local school systems have had "r"-ectomies... not an "r" in sight ???

Well, I was wondering if you and the NARGS Forum Jeremy were one and the same, and I see that you are, glad that's been straightened out.  I wasn't sure where you lived, nor did I know your last name; funny how it takes a forum like this to reconnect with people. Now, wasn't this the most amazing spring weekend ever!  I would have had first couple of flowers open on Crocus vitellinus except a squirrel ate the flowers.  There's more crocus buds coming.

Mark McDonough Massachusetts, USA, near the New Hampshire border USDA Zone 5 antennaria at aol.com  

Kelaidis
Kelaidis's picture
Title: Member
Joined: 2010-02-03

"Zoon" in Modern Greek has both o's pronounced: "Zoh-on" (it means animal "that which lives"). The "Aei" has all three vowels pronounced: "Ah-eh-ee".

But I always tell people when it comes to Scientific names: there really isn't a standard pronounciation. I have had pedants and puffed up idiots correct me every which way. Every European country has its own spread of variants, each thinking they are correct. Ancient Greek had numerous dialects that were radically different from one another: I tell people pronounce Latin names loudly, clearly and with conviction, and if you are corrected just say "My dear, that's the way I used to say it!"

For every minion of the peaks there are a dozen steppe children growing in the dry Continental heart of all hemispheres still unknown to horticulture.

Hoy
Hoy's picture
Title: Member
Joined: 2009-12-15
Jeremy wrote:

Hoy wrote:

Being from Oslo, Norway, I pronounce my R with the tip of my tongue very different from standard English.

Hello, Hoy

Now is that standard English English or American English? Just kidding! And Oslo. In America we would say ah-zloe, but I recently watched a Norwegian movie and it sounded like they pronounced it more like oosh-looh. But we're getting away from matters horticultural. A German friend recently visited and showed many slides from a trip to Svalbard (sp?).  She said there were many large tourist boats, but she was on a smaller boat for people interested in nature and science. She had taken some photos of flowers just for me, including one of Campanula uniflora, I think the most northerly Camp. And lots of Polar bears! Beautiful scenery!  

Jeremy, for me Standard English is English English English as I(should have)  learnt in school! I have been to Svalbard once for ten days in May. At that time of the year it was still snow so I crossed around with a snowmobile transporting coal and other stuff to a cabin far away from Longyearbyen. Sorry no plants to see! I have planned to go back in summertime....

(Some say oosh-looh and some oos-looh!)

Trond Rogaland, Norway - with cool, often rainy summers  (29C max) and mild, often rainy winters (180 cm/year)!

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